Saturday, August 20, 2011

From XL Man Shirt to M Ladies

It's another annual Snap-On Tools convention in Orlando.  Last year they closed Universal Studios at 6 and opened it up to all the Snap-On employees, 5000 dealers and their spouses for a private party, where we rode all the rides, saw all the shows, and grazed our way through all the free food from all the restaurants until midnight.  Everyone got a special shirt to wear, and by the time I got to the front of the line, the smallest size available was XL.  I walked through Universal in a night shirt!
Orlando was chosen again, and it's the same drill.  This year it's Sea World that will host our private party.  I got in the line of over 5000 people and ended up again with an XL, exact same fit as last year's shirt.  Groan.  I decided that I'd fix it, and began researching cutting down t-shirts.  I found a lot of trashy ho-girl shirts with holes and slits and rips.  I called a friend and she brought over a good idea and I copied her shirt somewhat (the hemline and neckline) and , because the shoulder seams drooped so low off my shoulders, I decided to just chop those baggy sleeves off.  Zig-zag hems did the trick and I got a pleasant surprise with the ruffled look.  Girly! Not crazy about the placement of Shamu, makes it look like I have a fat stomach.  Do you see the hidden wrench?  Below is pretty much a before and after. Different shirts but both were exact same fit before I got the scissors out.

2010's XL
2011 cut down

Friday, August 19, 2011

Quilts Quilts Quilts

I've made more, but these are the ones I have photos of.  I'll add more pictures as I find them.
For baby. Paper pieced, professionally quilted meander.
Little girl sized, paper & machine pieced, professionally quilted meander.
Twin, machine pieced, professionally quilted daisies.
Queen, machine pieced, professionally quilted stars.
Twin/Full , machine pieced, and machine quilted in the ditch.
A kit for baby. Machine pieced hand quilted around animals.
Baby, machine pieced and machine quilted around hearts.
Queen, machine pieced, professionally quilted meander.
Baby, machine pieced and machine quilted.
Wall hanging, fused applique, machine quilted SW inspired.
Twin/Full machine pieced and quilted.
My First Quilt 2003 - Machine pieced and quilted.
Queen, machine pieced, professionally quilted meander.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

How Ya Feelin? Hot Hot Hot! Let's Do Yard Work!!!

Whoowee, it is a hot summer!  Yesterday my indoor/outdoor thermometer registered 106 just outside the window.  Still, things must be done.  Mark is our yard man, but he is not a good sticker bush cutter.  It's my job to keep the evil thorn-covered bougainvillea plant under control.  It grows in long limbs in every direction, but never flowers.
This is what it looked like when I got it in a basket.
Mark's previous cuttings left all the limbs on the ground, its long thorns dried hard and begging to pierce through my flip flops and garden gloves.  As usual, the thorns won, but I got it under control and cleaned up with rake and hedge clipper!  The trash can is full of old and new clippings, the ground is clear of thorny foot-finders, and the corner of our yard looks less like a snake/raccoon/creepy crawly hideout.  Although I stepped carefully, I could feel the points of thorns almost piercing my skin through my shoes and had to use pliers to get the offenders out of my favorite flip flops.

I drilled a hole into the wooden eave of our house, just above the bougainvillea and near the window, to hang a squirrel-proof bird feeder.  It's so funny to watch squirrels leap from fence to the wire covered feeder, as their weight pulls the spring down and closes feeder openings.  My canary's cage is near that window and he loves all the birds that frequent the feeder.  Cardinals, blue jays, house wrens and tufted titmice are all greeted with a hello chirp.

A footnote on the bougainvillea: I learned that in order to have flowers, they need to be in well drained soil.  Ours is in a corner of our yard that gets regular rain run-off from our roof.  I also learned that they like to be root-bound, but ours has the whole yard to spread it's roots.  One day, I'll dig it up and put it in a pot where it belongs and can be happily root bound, drained, and flowering.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Cactus Flower

the potted cactus
My mother gave me a cutting from her cereus cactus.  I think she called it a Moon Flower.  I found out, it's called Hooker's Orchid Cactus, named for botanist W.J. Hooker by his good friend C. Darwin.  I have had this plant for about a year and these are the first blooms.  I noticed that I had already missed one bloom, but saw two Saturday night and was amazed at how fragrant they are.  The flowers are short lived; A bud begin opening after sunset, stays beautiful for one night, then wilts after sun rise.  On Sunday night there was one flower, more beautiful than the two the night before.  There are still two more buds that will either both bloom tonight (Monday) or maybe one Monday and one Tuesday.  Funny how such pretty flowers come from such an unattractive plant.  You can read about them here and here.
Saturday's flower
Sunday's bloom
Sunday's bloom
Photos taken with my iPhone 4